Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Are the Saints America's Team???

Hello all,

First, I wanna give big ups to my man Andy Roddick for as gutsy as a performance as I've ever seen in his match against Marin Cilic last night. I know he lost in 5, (6-7 (4), 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 3-6), but I actually stayed up and watched it in its entirety last night; and can't believe how much toughness A-Rod showed battling through a painful shoulder injury that left most his right side numb. The man has guts, that's for sure- the trainer worked on him twice, once in the locker room where Roddick asked if he could suffer a career threatening injury if he kept playing- when the trainer said "probably not", Roddick's response was "game on" and ran back to the court (in contrast to Nadal- who I love but was getting smoked and withdrew). Now, I know the great Herm Edwards would not condone me giving props to someone in a losing effort- but A-Rod couldn't even feel 3 of the fingers on his hand! 3- and he almost won!! and Roddick clearly wasn't himself all night, his normally massive first serve was coming in in the 110s (about 20-25mph slower than normal), and his second serve was registering in the double digits; but boy did he fight and almost pull it out. The third and fourth sets were a showcase of his new conditioning regiment- he got to balls and glided accross the court like Federer, showed great touch at the net and was a point away from winning the 4th set 6-0. His shoulder clearly gave out in the 5th as his serve slowed down a bit more, and his ground strokes lost pace; but he never complained and kept fighting until the last point. I think he may actually benefit from this in the long run; because his shoulder kept him from hitting with lots of spin, he flattened out his groundstrokes considerably during the 3rd and 4th sets- and looked as good from the baseline as he's looked since his US Open win in '03. Too bad, it came on the night his best weapon (serve) was taken from him due to an injury. But, if he gets healthy, and can combine the form he showed from the baseline with his normally dominate serve, look for Andy to shed the "one and done major winner" lable later this summer....
I watched the amazingly sloppy but entertaining Saints-Vikings battle from a bar in Telluride, Colorado on Sunday; and was amazed at how many "Who Dat?" chants I heard from the locals at the packed Brown Dog Pizza and Pub. As far as the game is concerned, it's hard to believe the Vikings were even in the game considering the turnover difference (5-1). A couple quick thoughts from a Patriots fan with no dog in this fight- I agree with the New York Times and want to give no respect to the referee Pete Morelli and his entire crew for making a mockery of the NFL rulebook and doing the worst job of any NFL crew since Ed Hochuli famously blew the Broncos-Chargers game in '08 (but at least Ed aplogized). As I've said before, I'm sick of watching refs takeover games; and it certainly looked like Pete Morelli was trying to win the MVP trophy. In overtime alone, they blew all 3 instant replay calls- (which can be seen here), including 2 bad spots, refusing to overule a completed pass which was clearly on the ground (after watching it, how is this even possible to miss???) and called a Arkansas-Florida like phantom pass interference to put the Saints in FG range; but, to me, the worst call of the day was the non-roughing the passer after Bobby McCray and Remi Ayodele teamed to make one of the biggest high-low cheap shots you'll ever see on Favre- which should have negated an intereception. 3 plays prior, Morelli correctly called a roughing the passer when Anthony Hargrove picked Favre up and drove him into the ground and apparently the boos really got to him because he swallowed his whistle on a clear cheap shot which left Favre hobbling (by the way, even if you don't like Favre- is there anyone who tougher than that guy??). Now, I know nobody likes to get boo'd, and Morelli may have feared for his post-game safety since after all the game was in New Orleans; but, his job is exclusively to watch the quarterback, and while everyone may not agree with the "Brady rule", it's there to keep a vulnerable player from getting hurt on a cheapshot (remmember a "chop block" is a personal foul too...), and a NFL ref is paid over $250,000 a year to have enough courage to make an obvious call that happened right in front of his face. I'm not saying the Saints wouldn't have won without these calls; what I am saying is that horrific officiating once again played a big role and takes the focus away from the action on the field; and puts a black eye on one of the most entertaining playoff games in recent memory. Secondly, I know the game was in the state of Louisiana, but I wasn't aware Brad Childress let Les Miles be the guest head coach of the Vikings for the final couple of minutes of the game. I know Favre will be dogged for a long time for throwing the interception, but it would have never happened had Childress not sent 12 men to the hudle (out of a timeout!!!) taking the Viks out of FG range (Longwell told the coaches before the game his max was 53 yeards, the penalty made it 56). Good job Brad... So, I can assume by the "Who Dats?" being vorciferated by Colorado natives that the Saints have taken over the Cowboys spot as "America's Team", which considering what that city has gone through is great to see. Remmeber, it was less than 5 years ago, that the Superdome was being used as a relief shelter for storm victims and New Orleans was under water. Since then, the Saints have served as a source of pride and helped unite the city; which makes them so easy to root for (great piece by Wright Thompson here). New Orleans is a great city, one of my absolute most favourite places, and it's great to see how strong it's come back in such a short time after such a terrible natural disaster. Also, big ups to Sean Payton for an amaing coaching job during his four year tenure in the Big Easy. Although, I have to admit, even though I'm not a fan of the "Who Dat?" chant,  at least it's not as bad as hearing "S-E-C!". This year's superbowl should be an offensive explosion, matching up 2 of the best QBs in the game- check here if you're thinking about making the trek to Miami.

I wanna give big ups to one of my all-time favourite bands (and the band of the decade in my opinion) Radiohead for performing an amazing show at the Henry Ford Theatre in LA Sunday night to raise money for Haiti. All revenue from the concert goes directly to the Haiti relief fund and they were able to raise about $600,000 in a 2-hour show at a very small venue on short notice. Tickets sold for around $4,000 per pair, and the band rewarded the crowd with an amazing set-list and even took song requests. Great performance for a great cause and check out this monumental set-list:
“Faust Arp”
“Fake Plastic Trees”
“Weird Fishes/Arpeggi”
“The National Anthem”
“Karma Police”
“Kid A”
“Morning Bell”
“How To Disappear Completely”
“A Wolf at the Door”
“The Bends”
“Dollars & Cents”
“Exit Music”
“Everything In Its Right Place”
“You And Whose Army?”
“Pyramid Song”
“All I Need”
“Lotus Flower”
“Paranoid Android”
“Street Spirit (Fade Out)”
Wow! I definately think they should raise some more money by selling live copies of this show- I would definately buy one...

Jay-Z's tour has been getting amazing reviews and he's still going. Upcoming dates and tickets can be found here...

As always, please post any good upcoming shows or events coming up and be sure to check the "near you" tab on our homepage, www.roosterfly.com, for a list of events in your area...

Till next week,

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